Tag Archives: vigilance committee

May 1856

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Thursday 1 – Some ice froze this morning, but it commenced storming. Snow and rain at intervals in the A.M.
Several ladies came over from the American Valley to the ball at Fox’s. Among them were my wife and Liz.
We bought the cook stove from Ed Bass at $40. It took four of us to carry it down to our new cabin. After supper we all went up to the Point to the ball. I stayed all night and slept with my wife—what a time I did sleep!
I gave Frank Goble $5. No work done in our diggins in the last two days on account of rain it has not been safe to drift.

Friday 2 – Snowed some last night, and snowing at intervals today. We all moved into our new cabin today. The inside is lined with canvass. The bunks were finished today, bolts and latches made of wood were put on the doors, and the boys are all gone to bed. I am alone, sitting by the stove making this entry.
I was up at the Point this P.M. and helped my wife off for the valley with the rest of the crowd that was over at the ball.

Saturday 3 – Cold and frosty last night. I, Dave, Kyler, and Len went up to the Point to help Sherwin on the flume. We went up to the mill, but no Sherwin. We went down to his house and found him asleep. I got him up and we all went to work the rest  of the day.

Sunday 4 – Cold and frosty last night. Us four went to work on the flume for Sherwin. Rains, John and Joe came up the flume to see me to get directions for the ranch. John and Joe got gold __$ this week.

Monday 5 – Cold and frosty last night again. I slept with Shults—rather crowded but the best I can do at present. Us four went to work for Sherwin today. Its getting along quite slow. There is a lack of tools, so we have to wait on each other. I’ve been patching up some work that was done the week before last. I am in hope there will be no more of that sort.
John and Joe came down to Rocky Bar early. Joe on his way to Marysville and John off to the American Ranch, so the old mountain diggins is deserted at last, I hope only for a short time.
Quite warm this P.M. for the first time.

Tuesday 6 – Nights are not so cold. Days are getting warm. The four of us are at work on the flume, besides three other men.

P.M. Sherwin came over from the valley and brought me a letter from H.P. dated April 26th.1 Clouded up and rained a very little. Sherwin helped us on the flume and says that 5 or 6 hands is enough for tomorrow.

Wednesday 7 – I left the boys at work on the flume. I went up to the Point and mailed a letter to H.P., cost 25 cents. I gave 25 cents for four boxes of matches. A. Morehead gave me a pair of pantaloons. Shults sent Liz a dress pattern, and Morehead loaned me a mule to ride over to the ranch. I arrived in time to dine with my wife. In the P.M. I and John worked at building a plank fence.

Thursday 8 – Bill went up to the mill after lumber to finish making a plank fence. He got 511 pounds of potatoes of Havland. It was late before he returned.
I and John was making a fence. It rained some this P.M., with thunder and lightning.

Friday 9 – Foggy this morning. I and John were working at the fence. We finished our part this afternoon. It rained quite a shower about noon. Bill made a load of stakes and hauled them. After dinner, he set stakes till night.

Saturday 10 – A storm started early last night—thunder and lightning with a heavy shower of rain and hail. I and John were putting up fence this A.M. In the P.M. all three of us worked at the plank fence and made a finish of it about dark. I received $2 for ranching.

Sunday 11 – The weather is quite warm and pleasant. In the P.M. John and Bill started for the diggins and drove Terwilliger’s yoke of cattle home that we had borrowed, or hired. Soon after they started, Kyler came over from Rocky Bar and then Sam Baloo. He came over for the purpose of having our Sockum Ditch surveyed.

Monday 12 – No frosts of nights, but warm days. Baloo and three other men went and surveyed the ditch. I was starting my new plank fence.

P.M. I was assisting our lawyer to answer a complaint in law. Later Bob Elliott turned in one yoke to be ranched at $4 per month a-head. My wife and Liz went to a concert this evening.
I paid Cross $.50 for smithing.

Tuesday 13 – I was staking plank fence and putting strips on it.

P.M. I and Duesler went to Chapman’s to see a cow, but did not like it. I paid Willman & Co. $60 on account for store goods.

Wednesday 14 – Cold and frosty last night. I was engaged today in making square wash tubs. Bradberry turned a mule on the ranch today. Kyler stopped with us tonight on his way to Rocky Bar.

Thursday 15 – Warm and pleasant again. I and my wife were making a garden.

P.M. I paid Frank Goble $8.50, making in all $48.50 for 21 days work. I collected $40 for ranching 21 head of sheep – Rayes’.

Friday 16 – I planted some melon seed and made two dressing tables to put up stairs. I collected $1 for mule ranching and $3 for the hire of a yoke of oxen yesterday. I paid $4 for a hand saw and made a sliding gate to open into the  pasture, and planted six beach kernels on the west side chicken lot.

Saturday 17 – Days are quite warm. I made wheels and put them on two gates.

P.M. paid $1.75 for coffee. Made handles to a plough all to finishing. I and Myres went Phillips’ security for $500 in a suit-at-law to the supreme court. John and Bill came over this evening.

Sunday 18 – I collected for ranching stock, of Bass $6, of Barnett $2.50, of Willman, on horse $1.50, on sheep $2.25. I also paid Willman $42.75 balance on account in the store, in all $102.75.
I, Bill, John, and my wife took a walk down on the ranch; we returned about noon. Liz went up to Meadow Valley in company with Tro Ward2 and returned.

Monday 19 – Cloudy this morning and rained a considerable shower in the P.M. I finished my plow handles. Bill hauled a load of planks for Garland and Robertson. One of the bands came off the wheel and Crofts put it on again, cost $2, I gave Hundley $25 to pay witness fees and paid Harlan $31 for potatoes. I received $5 of of Garland for hauling and let Bill have $1.

Tuesday 20 – Cool and cloudy. I and Bill commenced to lay out the garden in three foot rows, and to plant potatoes and other things. But Bill quit and went up town and got drunk. After dinner I and John finished laying out. Judge Searls came to hold court.

Wednesday 21 – Cold and rainy. Court was opened. Our case was called and set for tomorrow. Dave came over about noon.

P.M. Snowed considerably. John, Dave and Bill planted the last lot of potatoes. Still snowing and continued into the night.

Thursday 22 – Cold, snowy and unpleasant this morning. Our case was called and went in to trial. 12  jurymen were seated and sworn in. Most of the day was spent taking evidence. The case submitted about 9:00 P.M. and a verdict rendered at 4:00 in the morning.

Friday 23 – The defendant, Terwilliger, is to have 10 inches of water3 out of the disputed creek when it is there, and none when that amount is not there. Also, the disputed ditch, and the interveners are to pay cost of the intervention and get nothing, and we are to have the rest of the water in the creek at all times. When there is not 10 inches in the creek, we are to have the remainder. We are to pay the cost of the suit, except what the interveners have to pay. So may it be.
Cloudy and rainy at intervals. I gave $5 to buy butter. John and Bray went over to Nelson Creek this morning.
Rains hauled home Judkins and company’s plow and harrow, and got them 175 pounds of screenings for chickens and then went to Alford’s and hauled a load of lumber to Betsy Town for Alford. Rains bought a bald sorrel mare and is to pay $135 in 6 weeks —

Saturday 24 – Cloudy and unpleasant. Rains planted some corn, turnip seed, beet, and parsnip seeds. I and Balloo was getting up our costs and trying to ascertain what rights are left us in the suit, &c, &c
Dave and Kyler came over about noon and have gone to Betsy Town. I collected $26 for ranching, and $4.50 from Dickson. Jim Shults came over and stayed all night.

Sunday 25 – Cloudy and rainy, Balloo came over from Nelson Creek and stayed. Terwilliger was gassing about the lawsuit, what he was going to do with us for damages, &c.

P.M. I, Dave and Kyler started for Rocky Bar. I was riding the Rains’ bald pony. We went by my old cabins to see John. He was all alone. He gave me $57.50 in dust—what had been got the week before by him and Rains, and what he had washed out of the square box. We all went down to the Point. I gave Frank Fox $50 and told him to get more and go over to Quincy and pay the cost of the suit. We all went down to Rocky Bar.

Monday 26 – An early breakfast. I and John started for the Point. Dave and Kyler was to take the dimensions of J.C. Lewis’ flume and water ditch, as he is going to improve it. I paid John Thompson $13 for Joe Ficklin and $2.50 stable fee for the bald pony. After 9 o’clock, I and Thompson started for Marysville. There was considerable snow on the way to Grass Valley. There we took dinner and fed the ponies, cost $1.50. We set out again and stopped at Woods’.

Tuesday 27 – After breakfast I paid my bill, $4. We set out for the city. We arrived in town at 1:00 P.M. I was very much fatigued and sore. I lay about the stable on the hay all evening. I took supper at the cost of 50 cents and stayed with Derick all night —

Wednesday 28 – I feel much better. I breakfasted, $.50, and got the pony shod all round, $4, and got me a gold pan cost, $3, and got some oranges, $.75.
I saddled up the pony and went out to H.P.‘s ranch. I paid ferriage $.50. I took dinner with Cath and children. Jack came from the upper ranch. He’d done cutting hay up there and started the machine on the lower ranch and we then started for town and met H.P. I turned back with him. He says there is considerable excitement at San Francisco occasioned by the vigilance committee and the hanging of Casey and Cora.4

Thursday 29 – At half past nine I started for R.C. Bowne. I arrived at 1:00, took dinner, and told Bub my business. We put in most of the evening walking over his ranch. I borrowed $5 of H.P. and $1 of Derrick.

Friday 30 – The weather is cool and pleasant. After breakfast, Bourne started for the mountain mines to get money and I for Marysville. I arrived at H.P. at half past 12 noon, a distance of 25 miles.

Saturday 31 – At about 10:00 A.M. I and Ficklin went a-fishing at Jas Simpson’s lake. We very soon left off. I went in a-bathing and then to town $.50. Later I rode out with H.P. to the ranch.

February 1855

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Thursday 1 – Clear and pleasant this morning. I made two pick handles. I then cut and split some dry wood. After dinner I and John split some logs for back sticks. We went up to the reservoir and shut the gate, and then down to the diggins and home, after cutting an oak stick for pick handles. Cloudy this afternoon and commenced raining at dark.

Friday 2 – We fully expected a good rain and snow last night and today. It cleared off at noon, however, without rain to do any good, and no snow either. We went out to fix for mining, as there is water to answer if it will only keep from freezing so hard at night.
We commenced piping but our hose burst. We mended up and done considerable work, after all the trouble.

Saturday 3 – I, John and Shaw was piping off tailing and picked up $6.50. Lawrence is stripping by himself. Lloyd has not got back from below.

Sunday 4 – After breakfast as I pulled of my hickory shirt and put on another, of Johns washing. I’d only wore it two weeks. As I was dressed up and clean, I went down to the Point. I still thought to hear from my wife. Accordingly I got a letter from her dated December 22 18541 giving an account of somewhat of her trip to Iowa, and the big dinners, &c., &c. There one to John from his ma written from Iowa dated December 24 1854,2 and giving an account of the Iowa folks. It cost $2 for the two. I was expecting to hear that she was fixing to travel to California, but, O, the disappointment, blackness, darkness, all most ready to give up in despair.
This was one of those still delightful sunny days, warm and pleasant, as is so common. My lesson was the first chapter of Ephesians. I wrote my 17th letter to my wife.

Monday 5 – The hose slipped off the pipe and needed patching.We piped off tailings after it was mended. In the afternoon a pine burr run in the pipe. It took some time and hard punching to get it out. We picked up gold $7.

Tuesday 6 – We was at work betimes as usual. We had just fairly got underway when our hose burst. It took me till noon to sew it up again. I sent my 17th letter to wife by Lawrance to the express office, cost 25 cents. We got gold $41.50. It was warm all day, and cloudy.

Wednesday 7 – Cloudy, hailed a little at noon and later rained some. We were at work early but the hoses burst in two places. After dinner I and John took them down and carried them to the cabin to sew them over again. Later I went down to the Point to get twine. I saw Lloyd. He has got back, but is too drunk to come to the cabin. We got gold $18.

Thursday 8 – Cloudy weather. It was drizzling most of the day. At one time it was mixed with snow. I was at work in the cabin sewing the hose and am not done yet. John and Shaw gold gold $32. Lawrance is doing well. Lloyd has not got home yet. I suppose he is still drunk.

Friday 9 – Cloudy this morning but it cleared off, and was a beautiful, warm, sunny day. The wild geese were flying North. A yellow jacket came flying about in the cabin. Shaw and John got gold $16.50. I was in the cabin all day sewing the hose, still not done.

Saturday 10 – Clear and frosty last night but clouded up this forenoon.

P.M. Commenced raining good, and alternately it would snow, and keep at it. John and Shaw got gold $29 with me to help them from the middle of the afternoon, as I finished sewing the hose. Lloyd is not at home yet

Sunday 11 – Cleared off last night and froze. After doing some needle work this morning, we four went out to the diggins to see what harm was done by the rush of water. While out there we picked up $4. We cleaned out Lawrance’s boxes and went to the cabin, eat dinner and then went down to the Point.
Late in the evening a man by the name of Cook, asked me to drink with him and Vaughn. Vaughn said he did not ask Mr Haun to drink with him. I told Vaughn I did not drink with such a man as he was. He stepped forward one step and said I was a damned knave. I rose up and stepped towards him two steps. He drew a large Bowey knife and said, draw and come ahead. He was drunk and drinking. He is two cowardly to act so when sober. I felt very much like killing the rogue and doing murder. But the thought of doing what whiskey will soon do in any case, and sending Vaughn to and a just God —
I paused and reflected. I did not come to this country to fight and pitt my life against such great odds. He has nothing to live for but to get drunk.
This is the third time that a deadly weapon has been Pointed at me, but I was not much scared —
I got 1 1/8 inch sole leather, $1; paper tax 25 cents.

Monday 12 – Cold last night and clouded up this morning. We all four was running tailings off. Lawrance’s Diggins took out no gold today.

Tuesday 13 – I was making false bottoms for Hungarian Riffles. I got them made in time enough to put them in the boxes. Shaw and John was cleaning up bedrock till noon and got gold $8. After noon we were setting boxes and fixing on the hose that I mended last week.

Wednesday 14
– I, John and Shaw was mining today, washing down new dirt with hose and pipe. We took out $118, one piece weighing $53, and one $24, and one $22.50. The balance was small dust, cloudy or hazy. It commenced to rain after dark.

Thursday 15 – Did not rain much last night. Somewhat cloudy and foggy this morning, but turned out a beautiful, warm, sunny day.
We was piping away when the hose split–not the thread but the cloth, for the first time. It took me the whole evening to put on a patch. We got gold $32.50. If the hose didn’t rip —

Friday 16 – Fine weather today. It is the first day that we have been able to work all day with the pipe and hose for months past. We a good head of water and nothing to break. We took out $131.50, one piece weighing 5 1/4 oz or 84$, as we count. Lloyd came home to  day with Delirium-tremens.

Saturday 17 – Cool and clear. We fixed to clean up bedrock and got gold $143. This is what makes my time pass off much easier and faster than I want it to.

Sunday 18 – Cold this morning. I made three Hungarian Riffles for Lawrace, and made a level. After dinner I went down to the Point and mailed a letter for John to Pauline Haun, 25 cents. I got three boxes matches, 25 cents, and hired J. Shults to fill Lloyd’s place, as I do not intend to have anything more to do with a drunkard, than I can possibly help—

Sunday 18 – We had a settlement with Lawrance. He took out $67.50 in the last 14 days – we had to pay him $20 out of it for lost time. We then got $24 out of it to divide in four shares. It has been warm and pleasant today. My lesson is the 3rd Chapter of Hebrews — I had to patch the right sleeve of my hickory shirt, before I went to bed.

Monday 19 – Cool this morning, and continued to freeze all day. Cloudy, with wind from North. Some little snow fell. We cleaned up bedrock and got gold $27.50. James Shults came up and worked in Lloyd’s place with Lawrance. I am to give him $75 per month. Lawrance mended my boots tonight — I paid Shively, the constable, $3 for going down with me to Winters Creek to serve a process and attachment and summon witnesses, but Henry Goldshall was gone.

Tuesday 20 – Cold last night. The water froze up so that we could not work. I, John, Shaw and Lawrance took five picks to the valley had three sharpened, $1.50, and two steeled, $3. Three meals and lodging at Betsy Town each, $3 for me and $6 for John.

Wednesday 21 – We then took dinner at American Ranch, $1 each for I and John, and them came home before sundown. The weather is cool, and it froze considerable last night. Our water ditch is still froze up; no water to work with.

Thursday 22 – I dreamed last night that my wife was with me, and that John Hurst and his son Albert had come to California.
It was snowing a little this morning when I got up. The old snow was quite all melted off and today it is slightly covered again. We can’t work in our diggins. I went down to the Point and paid Roots and Lewis all we owed them, $13.25, as $8.50 was marked paid; $5 for John’s hat and $3.50 for whiskey. I gave Mrs Doussler $2 for an oven and lid for the company.

Friday 23 – Snowing this morning and continued more or less most of the day. Shaw and I had a settlement and divided out $4 in four shares. He got one and I kept three. I then paid him off 7 1/2 oz in gold dust that I had borrowed. In all, he loaned me 12 oz. I previously paid 4 1/2 oz. P.M. Shaw, Lawrance and I went down to the Point as we can’t work. Lloyd is anxious to know whether I will let him work again with us or not. I saw a son of Sam Brown’s that Cash Clay had the fight with.

Saturday 24 – Clear and cold last night. Three inches of snow on the ground. We are not doing anything like work. Warm and hazy today. I went down to the Point and learned for the first time that Adams & Co. Banking Express has failed. I had two old blue shirts. I cut one up to patch the other late at night. The snow it quite all gone.

Sunday 25 – Cold and clear last night but warm and cloudy today. I finished mending my shirt and read the first and second chapter of the First Epistle General of Peter. After dinner I went down to the Point. I learned from Whitney that the vigilance committee3 had called a meeting yesterday and added 10 more to their number, making 25 in all. They are determined to resist the civil law in the case of Captain Fagan, as the Grand Jury found a true bill against the vigilance committee three weeks since. It commenced snowing late this evening and was at it when I turned in.

Monday 26 – And was at it this morning. Four of us went up the ditch to put some new timber across the ditch to hold up the covering that had been broke down by the big snow we had at Christmas time. We finished at noon. It commenced to rain and continued all evening. After dinner I and Lawrance went up again and calked the long flume. We cleaned the rocks and snow out of the ditch as we came home. The water was nearly down to the reservoir —
This makes three days work done on the ditch.

Tuesday 27 – Cloudy and warm last night. Not much rain fell. The snow is fully half gone, about 10 or 12 inches deep. It is warm and cloudy all day without rain. The water made its way down to the diggins by 1/2 past 1:00, but not enough to work with. I, John and Shaw went up the ditch to see what was the matter. All was right, except the ground soaks up so much water.

Wednesday 28 – Commenced raining last night after dark and continued all night and all day today very hard. The snow is quite gone from about here. We all went to work, except Lloyd. we got gold $2.50. Jim Shults is at work for me.

September 1854

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Friday 1 – 23 years ago I was married. My prospects were bright and flattering, and I had a young wife to cheer me on and give me that pleasure that no other life can afford. O, what a change a short period of 23 years can make in human affairs. I am now sitting in my cabin all alone in a pine forest and surrounding mountains, in Plumas County, California, near opposite the mouth of Nelson Creek, and my wife is in Georgetown Kentucky. May we yet live together a score and three years, to help each other while passing over the down hill of life, and finally to put our trust in Him that is able to help in time of need, &c.
I gave lawyer able $25 to assist in my suit with Vaughn.
We got gold $10.50 —

Saturday 2 – I and Shaw are working the same spot of ground that I and John worked the 9th of September last, alongside of two pitch pines, one large. I cut the small one down last September and the large one blew up by the roots last winter. So we worked under the roots of the large one today and got nearly all of $81 gold, one piece weighing $35.50. The Johns got gold $16, the first they have taken out in 6 1/2 days. We divided out $58.62 and 1/2 cents apiece, after paying $22 expenses &c.

Sunday 3 – My partner Shaw left this morning to go down to his ranch. I and the Johns took three axes to grind and a pick to be sharpened at the Point. I got a letter from my wife dated June 31 18541 and another of July the 24 18542 as the figures indicate. She received a letter from me of date Sunday 3 May 28th on 28th June 1854. Her letter gives an account of Tom Johnson and Laura Miller running off and getting married and many other things too numerous to mention.
My lesson is Act Chapter 18 &c — I now shall retire to bed, but the thought of seeing my wife in these mountains is what I cannot not understand.
I paid $1 for letters and $1 for an ax handle for the company —

Monday 4 – The Johns went to work as usual. I knocked to pieces three old sluice boxes and made a trough off them, and took it out before noon. After dinner I went to work with them. We got gold $29. After supper all three gathered in my cabin and John played the fiddle, the tune
“Old Flies at Home.”

Tuesday 5 – I was at work all alone. Got gold $24. The Johns got $38, making in all $62. John forked out among the rocks a piece that weighed $24.50. He saw it when he threw it away with the rocks and went and picked it up. It is flat and rough, a nice specimen. After supper I and Lloyd went down to the Point to hear the news. All is quiet except the candidates.

Wednesday 6 – I got gold $5.50 by noon. The Johns got $18.50 all day. After dinner we went down to the Point to the election. Late in the evening, two gamblers went in to a vegetable store and took a Watermelon without the consent of the owner. They then went back to get another but the owner struck one of them on the head with a rock and knocked him down. He got up again and got a butcher knife and run the proprietor out and off— The two gamblers then turned and tore down the storehouse and threw all that was in it into Nelson Creek and then dared anybody to take it up. I’ve not seen anything to equal that. There was at least 100 men looking on &c56

Thursday 7 – I and John started to the American Valley to see after my lawsuit with Vaughn. By staying all day I found out that, by consent of the lawyers, my case would come off next Tuesday at 10 o’clock. So John and I started from Bradley’s Ranch late in the evening for home. I’ve walked several miles in the dark. I had been all day on my feet without eating any dinner.
I went up to Sister Betsy to see my lawyer. Found him sick in bed. He could not tell me when the county Judge would hold court, though Able, my other lawyer, told me.
On arriving at home McFall told me the miners rose and took the two gamblers and were trying them for tearing down the fruit store. The sheriff had come over and demanded the outlaws but the miners did not like to give them up. Lloyd came home from the trial and said that the sheriff had got them from the miners. One, by the name of George Asberry, is from Kentucky. The other is called Buck and comes from the East.
I saw a piece of gold taken out at Sister Betsy’s today weighing 8 oz and $14 with a hole in the middle of it. The diggins I took up last fall up there is very rich. I was trying to get some of them back again but did not see how I was to go about it, so I concluded to hold off for the present.

Friday 8 – McFall, the man I hired for Shaw, and I went to work and got gold $14. The Johns got $20.50.
The sheriff took Buck and Asberry over to the American Valley. They were tied on mules’ backs as they passed the Willow Ranch this morning —

Saturday 9 – I and McFall got gold $10.50 and the Johns got $19, in all $29.50. After supper I and Lloyd went down to the Point. There is great excitement among the miners on account of Buck and Asberry being turned loose again by the civil atrocity, as they have been making some threats &c.

Sunday 10 – I wrote my wife my 14th letter and sent her $200 bill of exchange payable at New York by Adams & Co. express. I was down at the Point and mailed it. The miners met and appointed a committee to look after depredators. My lesson is Chapter 11 of Paul’s Letter to the Romans.

Monday 11 – I went up to the Independence to serve a subpoena on Pat Carley for a witness in the case of Freer and Vaughn. He refused to go. I made him a tender of $8. He was afraid not to take it.
I put in the day in looking around. I hired old McFall to work in my place. Shaw went up the ditch. The three of us got gold $13.50 —

Tuesday 12 – John, I and McFall went over to the American Valley in due time. Court was opened. Ward was the judge. Pat Hunley undertook my case in the place of Able. Tom Cox was sick. The plaintiff filed five different objections but was over ruled and the case tried on its merits. Four witnessed against and two for me. The witnesses were heard and the case presented. It was decided against me.
I paid for dinners and whiskey $4. At sunset, after paying Black Hawk $5 for two picks and a hoe, I and John went four miles to Illinois Ranch where we stayed all night. I am to pay $29.50 for company goods.

Wednesday 13 – Paid 50 cents for our lodging and went six miles home to breakfast, and then out to work. I and Shaw and the Johns and McFall dug down there by the big pine tree today. We all got gold $30.
I dreamed I was in Georgetown and went with my wife to her rented house, and we got in bed together and that Sam was killing hogs &c.

Thursday 14 – I and Shaw got gold $19.50 working in the old ravine that was so rich last year. The Johns got gold $34. McFall was not at work.

Friday 15 – I, Shaw and McFall was at work in the old ravine and got gold $34 and the Johns got $38. The water is so weak we don’t use the hose and pipe. It threatened rain yesterday and last night, but none fell.

Saturday 16 – I and Shaw went to work in the old ravine for the last time. We was at it till noon and got gold $5. The Johns were mining all day and McFall with them till noon.

P.M. We three went to the Willow Ranch to help raise a barn. After supper I and McFall went down to the Point. I paid Thompson $4.50 for beef. Green McHatton had left me the $100 I  loaned him. The Johns got gold $44.

Sunday 17 – I, Shaw and McFall started for Sister Betsy’s after settling the past week’s work. We took dinner at Colonel Russell’s in the American Valley. We then stopped at Bradley’s and saw my lawyer. He told me the judge had granted a new trial with Vaughn. Late in afternoon we landed at Betsey Town.

Monday 18 – We started out a-prospecting and put in the day. Did nothing else of importance. My back paid the penalty for sleeping on a hard bed last night.

Tuesday 19 – We bought a claim of Isaac Adams for $150 and put McFall to work our interest &c

Wednesday 20 – There was two old tarrs a-prospecting at the foot of Sister Betsy’s ravine. They asked me to take an interest with them.

Thursday 21 – I and Shaw set in with them and sunk it to the bedrock 24 feet and 16 feet under water. We got no gold

Friday 22 – We were examining our diggins and took up two claims adjoining the ones we bought. Last night there was a ball at one of the Hotels. I was looking on to see how they done up things of that sort in California. Old married woman of all ages up to 5 and 40 was on the floor all the night. Scarcely half-a-dozen girls at the ball.

Saturday 23 – After breakfast we paid our bills. Mine was $9.50. We started for home. I stopped at Bradley’s some time and then went to Russell’s and took dinner.

P.M. Went by Myers and saw a quarter race and a first fight. I then started for home with Shaw. I had hot not slept in the same bed two nights, in consequence I was lousy. We got home in good time for supper.

Sunday 24 – I took off my duds last night and laid them aside. I took a cold bath and put on a clean shirt and to bed. I slept comfortable. Got up in the morning, bathed again, breakfasted, and settled our affairs.
I and Lloyd went down to the Point and got some dust changed. I sent Lloyd back with the money for Shaw, as he was going to Sister Betsy’s to work our interest. I stayed till late and saw a fight in which Pat Curley, one of my old partners, got whipped quite easily by Jim Pike, as they call him. We got no money in our new claim. The Johns got gold $62.75. My lesson is the 12th chapter of 1st Corinthians.



April, Directions by Givens 1854

To see that portion of California which is desirable to settle in, start from the Mission of San Jose, and travel on horse back to Monterrey passing by the Mission of Santa Clara up the Pueblo Valley to the Mission of San Juan, then to Monterrey


Monday 25 – I and the Johns went to cleaning out the ditch by stopping the water and cutting out the roots and shoveling out the bottom. We have not got sufficient water to wash for gold.

Thursday 26 – We three are still at work on the ditch.

P.M. McFall said he would help us and did so. I have a very bad cold last night. I lay with a wet towel on my forehead to ease the aching.

Wednesday 27 – I, the Johns, and McFall still at work on the ditch.

Thursday 28 – We four are still cleaning up our ditch.

Friday 29 – We four finished cleaning out the ditch. Shaw came home because we had to quit working the claim we bought at Sister Betsy. Other men than those we bought it off claimed it, so they had to fork over our money again, at least $90 and $60 on Sunday next.

Saturday 30 – After breakfast I and Shaw started for the new diggins near Snake Lake. I rolled up two pairs of heavy blankets and a towel, and tied on a tin cup, my rifle and ammunition, the butcher knife tinning at my left side. We stayed all night at Sister Betsy’s after traveling only 12 1/2 miles. Our dinner 75 cents.